|Subject: Archive - Actor Craig Richards
Dies at 60
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Date Posted: Sunday, April 15, 07:09:09pm
Craig Richards, 60, lost his courageous five year battle with cancer on May 29, 2016.
The second born son of a career Marine, Gerald J. Roffers, and Ruth M. (née Coriell) Roffers, Craig was born on Nov. 5, 1955 in Oceanside. The family moved to various assignments throughout the United States before settling when Craig was 15 years-old. Returning to his mother’s birthplace, Banning, in 1970, his parents opened Jerry Roffers’ Small Appliance Repair on Ramsey St. in the heart of the downtown area. Craig attended 16 different schools before graduating high school in 1973. He was followed by his six brothers and sisters, all graduates of Banning High School, as did their mother and Aunt Grace (née Coriell) Huff in 1953 and 1954 respectively.
Coming from a large, nomadic family adaptability, adventure and perseverance became character traits that stayed with Craig throughout his life. After a short tour of duty in the Marine Corps, Craig returned to Banning and embraced an innate talent in drawing, design and art, combined it with self-taught technical acumen, and defined himself in the emerging field of graphic design. Recognized in the community for his artistic talent, he was commissioned by the Department of Motor Vehicles in 1975 to paint the “Stagecoach” mural on the side of the building at San Gorgonio and Ramsey that is still there today.
Craig’s avid career choice would support a passion for the performing arts, which he discovered as an early member of the theatrical production company, The Pass Players, in Banning. Craig dedicated himself both on and off stage directing, starring and acting in plays. Additionally, he used his graphic design skills to create playbills, posters and programs. He was elected as the organization’s president and chairman of the board and earned the Best Supporting Actor Award for his portrayal of Humphrey Bogart in “Play it Again, Sam” in 1979.
During this time in Banning and following in his parents’ entrepreneurial footsteps, he partnered with friend Robert Bilicke and started Roffers & Bilicke Graphic Design. He continued to perfect his commercial artistic skills working at Price Graphics, Pacific Coast Studio Directory (where he designed the Academy Award® Programs) and The O’Dell Group, all located in Hollywood.
Throughout his career Craig established many graphic design, Internet-based, and software entities. He was President/CEO of Craig Richards LLC, wrote and designed BigSender, an email management program, created AdminPro a digital file management program, and co-founded Cybersite, a Web-development firm. Craig founded Capital Ideas, a brand identity and packaging firm specializing in the entertainment and health-related fields. As a pioneer in social media he established award-winning FamilyReunion.com “The Family Social Network” to help families publicize and organize their family reunions.
While his technical and innovative efforts seemed to dominate his time, Craig also pursued his artistic endeavors. Envisioning his dream of contributing to the entertainment industry, he moved to Hollywood in 1980 where he worked as a model, actor and eventually a director, producer, screenwriter and filmmaker. His many film roles included a security officer beside Jim Carrey in “Majestic,” a Highway Patrol Officer on “Cannonball Run,” and a concerned father in “The Princess Diaries.” Craig loved working with Jane Seymour at Paramount Ranch in the hills of Malibu as “Swede,” his recurring character on “Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman.” He enjoyed several guest appearances on “Melrose Place,” “Murphy Brown,” “L.A. Law” and more. He was especially proud of his leading role in the science-fiction spoof “The Micronots!”
In 2002, Craig relocated to Bend, Ore. and quickly found himself in the vibrant live- theatre, local television and independent filmmaking scene. Craig was continually supportive of the artistic pursuits of others and, in 2008, co-founded and served as the first president of the Oregon Film Alliance, an advocacy organization formed to attract film and television projects to cinematic Central Oregon. Simultaneously, he was working for his sister Taylor Whitney’s company, Preserving The Past, LLC | Home-Movie-Classics and her client Falcon Films to provide voiceover talent to a number of restored movies, being dubbed “The Voice of Falcon Films.” Toward the end of his life, he was busier than ever behind the camera attached to numerous award-winning television commercials and promotional projects. Under the banner, Dolphin Hearts Productions, a film production company which Craig founded in 2006, Craig produced, wrote and/or directed the family comedy “Hawaiian Vacation,” the dramatic thriller “Open,” the romantic tragedy “Infidel,” the historic drama “Kent State” and the outrageous comedy “Extremely Used Cars: There Is No Hope” in 2015.
Amidst his adventurous film, television, graphics arts and digital technology career, Craig was a dedicated father and family man. He was father to his son Nicholas, from Glendale, Calif. currently living in Austin, Texas, son Connor (11) and daughter, Alexandra (9), from Bend, Ore. currently living in Chelsea, Mich. with their mother. He loved to travel and frequently found time to visit family and friends in all corners of the nation including Arizona, New York, Wisconsin and Florida. Being true to himself, Craig adapted to many different situations, he persevered to follow his dream and lived a rewarding and adventurous life.
In 2013, after five years of suffering the ramifications of chemotherapy and radiation treatment for throat cancer, Craig retreated to Tampa, Fla. to live out his final years. He was a gentle, introspective, philosophical soul who loved deeply. He loved his work, his family and life. Craig impacted the lives of many, made an indelible mark on those with whom his life’s path crossed and will be forever missed by his family, friends and colleagues from around the world.
Craig was preceded in death by his father, mother, brother Dale Robert Roffers (1954-1957) and sister, Jodie Roffers-Schoch, who suddenly passed just 20 days before her brother Craig.
He is survived by his sons, Nicholas Richards and Connor Richards; daughter Alexandra Richards; brothers, Randy Roffers and Rick Roffers; sisters, Taylor Whitney, Jas Whitney and Karen Roffers; nieces, Sheila Hirst, Sarah Barthold, Andrea Roffers, Audrie Barthold, Jamie Coriell Barthold and Allison Arterberry; nephews, Charles Roffers and Joshua Castañon; great-nephews, Jared Caudel and Jorden Richardson; great-niece, Charlotte Roffers and many cousins, extended family, friends and colleagues.
Friends and family are invited to honor Craig at a “Hollywood-themed” memorial which will be held on Saturday, Aug. 13, 2016, 1 to 6 p.m. at 16951 Sendero del Charro, Riverside, California 92504. For more information and to RSVP call (818) 317-7147 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Cards, condolences and donations, to offset the cost of memorial services, are welcome. Please send to Taylor Whitney c/o Preserving The Past, LLC 2290 East Avenue Rochester, NY 14610.
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